Before the daybreak shines a star That in the day's great glory fades; Too fiercely bright is the full light That her pale-gleaming lamp upbraids. Before the daybreak sings a bird That stills her song ere morning light: Too loud for her is the day's stir, The woodland's thousand-tongued delight. Ah! great the honor is, to shine A light wherein no traveller errs; And rich the prize to rank divine Among the world's loud choristers. But I would be that paler star, And I would be that lonelier bird, To shine with hope, while hope's afar, And sing of love, when love's unheard.
- by Francis William Bourdillon (1852 - 1921), "Before the daybreak" [author's text checked 1 time against a primary source]
Musical settings (art songs, Lieder, mélodies, (etc.), choral pieces, and other vocal works set to this text), listed by composer (not necessarily exhaustive)
- by Ethelbert Woodbridge Nevin (1862 - 1901), "Before the Daybreak", op. 5 (Five songs) no. 5, published 1889. [voice and piano] [text not verified]
Researcher for this text: Sharon Krebs [Guest Editor]
This text was added to the website: 2011-07-08
Line count: 16
Word count: 103